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The Thin Line Between Happy for You and Sad for Me
a blog by Jenn Nixon, September 14, 2016
There is an invisible bar we infertiles constantly teeter on whenever one of our loved ones becomes pregnant; we struggle amid genuine excitement for their success, and nagging disappointment at our own failure. It’s the line between happy for you and sad for me. A place I know all too well.
For over 6 years, I have watched so many friends and family members go on to have their first, second, and third child; all while infertility kept me from joining their team. It became easier over time to get used to the bumps, the baby showers, and the inevitable births. Of course it bothered me some, but not enough that I absolutely couldn’t be around the reminders.
I got pretty good at being happy for their pregnancies. I asked questions about their ultrasounds, nursery ideas, and symptoms. It became natural; I didn’t have to force it. I really felt true excitement for the happiness that had been bestowed upon them. I was able to do this, because I knew my time was just around the corner. One day it would be me.
Then 2013 happened. I was hopeful, so hopeful that the heart problems that had been discovered right after my recent second-trimester loss, would be a non-issue after I had surgery in June. Once my heart function was back to normal, they said I could do IVF; they promised. I held on to that silver lining; I knew everything would work out. It had too.
But it didn’t.
It’s September, and two surgeries later, I am no better than I was before. IVF is still so far away, and I am beginning to worry that maybe 2014 won’t be the year of Baby Nixon.
My hope is beginning to falter; my chance at success has been delayed.
That’s the part that is the hardest; the part where I can’t even TRY to become pregnant. No IVF. No IUI. No natural TTC. Nothing. And not only is it difficult to be around pregnant friends, slowly I have found it hard to relate to my infertile companions.
They get the chance to try, all while I am forced to watch from the sidelines. I am excited for each obstacle they overcome in their IUI/IVF cycle; I know all too well how stressful medically-assisted baby-making can be. I keep my fingers crossed for a quick two week wait; a successful outcome for each of one. But then I remember how far away I am from even getting to experience these things. And my happiness for them is overtaken by my sadness for me.
This is one of the most difficult moments I have had as an infertile. Positivity and hopefulness have always come so naturally, they were my strongest weapons against disappointment. Without them, I don’t know how to handle the pregnancies. I don’t know how to handle my infertile friends. I am running out of allies.
For the first time in over 6 years, I am struggling with hope. I am teetering on the invisible line of happy for you and sad for me; and the truth is, the latter has more pull.